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Search goes 2.0: All-new google search


Courtesy: googlesystem blog

Google’s new experiment that lets you reorder and annotate search results is now live. Google SearchWiki should be available automatically if you are logged in to a Google account and it can be recognized by the visual clutter added to the search results.

Next to each result, you should see three new options: a way to promote a web page at the top of the results, an option to remove results from the page (they’re still visible at the bottom of the page) and a feature that lets you share public comments about a result. After promoting a result, Google shows some unnecessary information about the other people who promoted the result.

It’s important to remember that all the changes are saved to your Google account and they won’t affect the search results for everyone, at least not directly. If you want to see an aggregation of all promotions, demotions and comments, go to the bottom of the page and click on "See all notes for this SearchWiki". This is the real wiki built by Google and it’s easy to access by adding &swm=2 to the URL of a search results page:

Comments are not very useful, although you could find insights for some obscure queries. The absolute number of people who promoted a search result is not very useful either, especially when you’ll see big numbers like 314,159,265.

SearchWiki’s main idea is to give users the opportunity to manually customize the search results and make them more predictable. Since many people repeat common searches like [mail], [weather], [news] and Google’s results are constantly changing, it’s nice to pick your favorite results and display them at the top. If you can’t find a site you like, click on "Add a result" and manually add a page in the list of top results.

Good things about SearchWiki:

– you can now adjust Google’s results for your typical queries and save time when repeating the searches

– use Google instead of bookmarking web pages

– for unfamiliar queries, check the wiki to find a different ranking and potentially useful comments. Try to avoid the wiki for queries that are likely to be spammed.

Bad things about SearchWiki:

– visual clutter. The only way to remove the additional icons displayed next to each search result is to log out.

– your changes are available only when you repeat the query and, in some cases, for similar queries (e.g.: [] in addition to [google]). That means you can’t remove a web page or a domain from all search results

– comments are public and there’s no option to write private notes (Google removed the option to annotate results in Google Notebook)

– an obvious feature would be to get a permalink for your edited results, but Google doesn’t offer this yet

– there’s no option to toggle between your edited results and the standard results (you’ll have to log out)

– it’s difficult to reorder results, since the only action allowed is to place a web page at the top, after all the other promoted pages. If you promote the page again, it will become the first result.

Google has always used people’s clicks to improve the quality of search results, so the new options could influence the ranking algorithms in different ways. "At this time we aren’t using SearchWiki to influence ranking but it is easy to see how that could happen in the future," said Marissa Mayer. "Search is adapting to the Internet as it becomes a more participatory medium. Now you have people telling us specific things about how they’d like to see their search results. You could imagine if we do see a particular site (about which) people have a unanimous opinion, that might trigger external things. Like maybe we should check out our spam control," suggested Cedric Dupont, product manager for SearchWiki and Google Knol.

Intel today launched its ambitious “Connected Indians” movement at The Taj Palace, New Delhi.

connected indians

Check out!

The Connected Indians movement aims to be the catalyst for delivering the power of the Internet into the hands of a billion Indians. Intel states that its success will hinge on spirited public and private participation.

Over the next few months, Intel will mobilize people, resources & infrastructure to facilitate Internet adoption across India.

Over time, this collaboration will help build partnerships between people, Industries and stakeholders via a complete and connected ecosystem to accelerate the growth of Internet and its benefits to the society.

The Connected Indian web site is an innovation in itself wherein users can click on an interactive map to locate their co-ordinates, and then post their voice for an Internet-enabled India. Not only that, they can utilize the in-built feature to invite more of their friends and peers from their web contact lists to add in more numbers.

There is also an India Speaks section that highlights different areas where Internet is making a huge difference in the way people, processes, industries & services in India are progressing with the power of the Internet.

Intel is following up this movement on-ground with specially-designed “Net Yatras” wherein it will showcase Internet’s benefits to Indians using interactive tools & techniques.

This is one movement that has been designed with a specific cause in mind and Intel promises that for every 10,000 Connected Indians who register, the movement will donate a PC to selected government schools in rural areas.

Now that’s what we call a spirited initiative!

Know more about the movement here.

Join the movement here.

Join the Connected Indians Orkut Community here.

Intel’s partners in this venture include google, HCL, Zenith, Edurite, MAIT, BSNL, Reliance Communications, Tata Indicom, Acer, Intex, Novatium, Wipro, Asus, CII, e-zone, lenovo, NIIT, Tata Communications, Croma, NASSCOM etc.

It will be interesting to see the kind of products & services Intel will introduce to take this step further & forward. Here’s wishing Intel all the best for the initiative & hoping that more & more brands take such steps towards better propagation and acceptance of technology!

Knol by Google

Knol, A Forum, A Blog or Wikipedia… Well, the mighty Google has come up with another marvel. I can see that Google creates stuff that can help people, and earn while the products are free to use.


This time, Google created something, that they call “a unit of knowledge”. In words of Google, a knol is an authoritative article about a specific topic. In first look, it might appear as a simple Blog. Here you create articles as you do in Blogs, but they are consolidated as in Wiki. There can be contributors, collaborators and community members. You can edit, or just suggest an update. Moreover, you can have revisions. You can review Knols, post comments and reply to comments. So this makes it more like forums.

What’s in the box?

Here you will find topics like Heart Attack, AIDS, Prostate Cancer, Name Verification, Installing UBUNTU and millions more. But that’s not all, you can add your own Knol and enhance the knowledge base.

How Authentic is the content?

Knols are pieces of knowledge, written by authentic people from respective fields. Moreover, Google verifies members, so anything they post is genuine. Besides, people can flag your content or update it as in Wikipedia.

What else?

If you think that this is a nice initiative, then wait for more surprise. Google has linked AdSense to it. Google allows you to link any existing AdSense account or create a new one on the spot. Then you are given option to display ads on your article. You can chose it for all Knols you publish or on selective Knols.

But the part, that interests me most is License. Google Knols offer three license types.

    And did I mentioned Collaboration Model. They are giving three collaboration Models…

  • Open Collaboration model, where any signed in user may edit the Knol
  • Moderated Collaboration model, where any signed user may suggest edits to the knol, but these needs approval from an author before being published (Now here they take over Wikipedia)
  • Closed Collaboration model, where no outsider is allowed to play with your knowledge.

Still More…

You can import doc, xls, pdf, txt and other documents. You can have your profile page and there is still more to be explored…

Check out…

The new-look Intel Youth Network is live!

Intel has completely revamped its initiative for the Indian youth, with the launch of Intel Youth Network (


Targeted at the tech-focused youth, the community focuses not only on technology, but also features information on exciting career options and some interesting on-site games to engage the audience. The youth Network is a one-stop shop for the youth to find interesting & relevant information, understand computing-related technologies, refer friends to win rewards, participate in exciting games & contests and  a lot more.

The network also offers an innovative web-based referral scheme, wherein members can pass on PC-sales leads that they may come across within their peer group/friends/family to GID’s (Genuine Intel Dealers) and earn exciting rewards upon closure! This in our opinion is one learn & earn program that is relevant, exciting and can be utilized with minimum fuss!

Bigger plans are afoot to make the website even more relevant & focused in the coming days.

Solutions|Digitas designed the new look and feel and worked with Intel in bringing in content partners. They also are managing the website and will be responsible for future updates, promotions et al. Solutions|Digitas’s involvement is not just limited to the online aspect of the program. They are also actively managing all on-ground promotions including those at colleges, malls & multiplexes.

You can join the network here!

Publicis Groupe Launches VivaKi

VivaKi – A New Growth Engine for the New Media and Digital Environment

Paris, June 25, 2008 – Publicis Groupe today announced the launch of VivaKi, a new
strategic initiative designed to significantly improve the performance of advertisers’
marketing investments as well as boost Publicis Groupe’s growth in the context of rapidly
expanding digital markets. VivaKi will be led by Managing Partners Jack Klues and David
Kenny, both members of Publicis Groupe’s Management Board.

VivaKi will take advantage of the combined scale of the autonomous operations of Digitas,
Starcom MediaVest, Denuo and ZenithOptimedia to develop new services, new tools, and
new partnerships. The strategic move reflects Publicis Groupe’s conviction that a totally
new and more integrated organization of the  media, interactive, analog and digital
universes is necessary in order to leverage scale and technological innovation, the key
determinants of future success.

Maurice Levy, Chairman and CEO  of Publicis Groupe, commented: “The explosion of
digital over the last ten years has led to a revolution without precedent in economic history
— in terms of the incredible speed of change, its geographical reach and its depth (the
world today has at least 1.7 billion Internet users).  Our societies are being transformed
before our very eyes: the way people are  educated, gather information, entertain
themselves, meet each other, dialogue and  do business is being  profoundly influenced
around the planet by the digital, interactive and mobile phone environments. Our business
is undergoing equally vast changes. We are witnessing the creation of new global giants
(such as Microsoft, Google and Yahoo) as well as a redefinition of our business models
thanks to the blurring of boundaries: geographic, professional, as well as between content
and distribution or  roles regarding content generation.

In order to help our clients rethink their marketing and improve the performance of their
media investments in this new world, we have built a leadership position by integrating
digital capabilities in all our agencies, by acquiring Digitas and through striking innovative
partnerships with new players such as Google.

We are today taking a decisive and transformational step by profoundly modifying the
Groupe’s organization, by redirecting investments toward digital and by instituting a
significant change in our professional approach. All these changes will make our agencies
and networks even more competitive and will help our clients build better connections with
their audiences by increasing the efficiency and productivity of their marketing
investments. In reinforcing our leadership in  these new areas, we fully intend to benefit
from the surge in this sector’s growth  and to win substantial  new market share.”

The VivaKi Difference

VivaKi is sharply differentiated by four essential elements:

1. Scale – this is a key factor unleashing value for our clients as they face large new actors
in the media landscape. Publicis Groupe today has the necessary size for global
leadership in its sector. The Groupe is now further leveraging its scale by aligning
resources and the power of its operations under VivaKi.

2. Innovation – by building the VivaKi Nerve Center at the heart of the new entity, Publicis
Groupe is fulfilling several objectives:

•  Creating the world’s largest center for developing the new technologies necessary
to our clients’ future growth

•  Making the resources of the VivaKi Nerve Center available to all Groupe entities,
including our creative agencies

•  Bringing our clients the best solutions to improve performance marketing, relations
with platforms (MSN, Google, Yahoo) or social networks (MySpace, Facebook, etc),
as well as integrated media solutions  and the optimization  of data analysis and
return on investments.

3. Technology – the approach of Publicis Groupe rests on Open Source systems giving it
access to all available innovations and solutions. Proprietary tools will however be
developed, such as Navigator® and Insight Factory®. Links will be developed with digital
platforms, cable operators, telcos and media  supports to improve exchanges and to
benefit form leveraging scale.

4. Talents – with the shaking up of our industry, new more flexible and more diversified
talents — liquid talents — will be critical. Finding and developing such talent will be a core
competency of VivaKi, through the new training and career development programs offered
by its Talent Development Platform.

The different entities (Digitas, Starcom MediaVest, Denuo and ZenithOptimedia) will
continue to develop solutions specific to each of their clients, in a totally independent way
– all supported by the VivaKi Nerve Center and the Talent Development Platform.

The VivaKi Management Teams

Jack Klues and David Kenny are Managing Partners of VivaKi, functions which reflect a
shift from a traditional hierarchical management approach.

Within VivaKi, David Kenny will focus on identifying advantages linked to scale (VivaKi
Nerve Center, Talent Development Platform and Technology); Jack Klues will be
responsible for growing and developing brand-specific solutions.

According to David Kenny: “VivaKi’s scale creates unparalleled advantages for our clients.
It allows us to invest in training and developing the best talent, to sustain the strongest
open-source technology platform, and to provide strong and impactful solutions to our
media partners.”

Laura Lang is promoted CEO of Digitas replacing David Kenny.

Starcom MediaVest, ZenithOptimedia and Denuo will continue to be led by their current
CEO’s – Laura Desmond, Steve King, and Rishad Tobaccowala.

Curt Hecht will lead the VivaKi Nerve Center.

Renetta McCann will organize and activate the Talent Development Platform.

Said Jack Klues: “Starcom MediaVest Groupe, ZenithOptimedia and Digitas will take what
they need from VivaKi to strengthen their existing operations. They will continue to operate
in a completely independent way, developing customized solutions for clients. At the same
time, these clients will benefit from VivaKi’s ability to deliver proprietary tools as well as
advantages of scale — helping clients reinforce links to consumers in a more cost effective

The VivaKi Name

The name VivaKi is derived from the word “viva” which means life, and “ki” (or Qi) which is
often translated as energy flow.  According to Lévy, the Groupe sought a name that
signified a new frontier – a new lead solution in the digital era.

Less Is More

So what is it that evades a mail recipient’s attention?
According to Gary Levitt and Rob Lubow,who run marketing profs,a marketing blog, “In an attempt to break from the herd, many email marketers ironically adopt a herd mentality of more clutter, more content, more MORE.” Well, that’s exactly the wrong thing to do, apparently.

In email, less is more, Levitt and Lubow say. To help you understand the need to simplify your e-outreach, they offer three key questions to ask yourself before your next email campaign:

What kind of email do you want to receive? A personal note from a good friend is likely at the top of your list. And even then, you don’t expect more than a couple of lines of text.
How much time will someone invest in an impersonal marketing message that’s also sent to thousands of other people? The answer: Not much. Instead, “[B]e a friend,” advise Levitt and Lubow. “Keep it simple. Keep it nice. Make a good subject line that’ll earn those 3.5 seconds you need to get your simple message across.”
Will your message be sharing space with ads? Gmail, AOL and Hotmail are just a few of the providers that frame email with ads these days. “There’s only one way to stand out from all those ads,” the authors claim. “[L]ook less like an ad.”
“Once simplicity is embraced, you’re free to converse plainly with your clients—easily and often. Designers, template-selection, and deadly cross-service compliance issues fall away. Your readers save time, too, and love you for it.”

Guerilla marketing

Guerilla marketing is an unconventional marketing intended to get maximum results from minimal resources.

Coined by Jay Conrad Levinson, Guerilla marketing is more about matching wits than matching budgets. Guerilla marketing can be as different from traditional marketing as guerilla warfare is from traditional warfare. Rather than marching their marketing dollars forth like infantry divisions, guerilla marketers snipe away with their marketing resources for maximum impact.The term has since entered the popular vocabulary to also describe aggressive, unconventional marketing methods generically.

Levinson identifies the following principles as the foundation of guerrilla marketing:

  • Guerrilla Marketing is specifically geared for the small business and entrepreneur.
  • It should be based on human psychology instead of experience, judgment, and guesswork.
  • Instead of money, the primary investments of marketing should be time, energy, and imagination.
  • the primary statistic to measure your business is the amount of profits, not sales.
  • The marketer should also concentrate on how many new relationships are made each month.
  • Create a standard of excellence with an acute focus instead of trying to diversify by offering too many diverse products and services.
  • Instead of concentrating on getting new customers, aim for more referrals, more transactions with existing customers, and larger transactions.
  • Forget about the competition and concentrate more on cooperating with other businesses.
  • Guerrilla Marketers should always use a combination of marketing methods for a campaign.
  • Use current technology as a tool to empower your business.
A good example of guerrilla marketing was when a leading men’s magazine projected an image of Gail Porter onto the Houses of Parliament. It was a stunt that was talked about by everyone (well, nearly…certainly most men: but that was the intention anyway).

It was an attempt to get people to vote in the ‘Worlds Sexiest Women’ poll. The results were outstanding – all down to the stunt creating huge public awareness. For a small business, this would probably be a little too extreme, but you get the picture.

[slideshare id=297004&doc=304052-guerilla-marketing-1204913133402532-2&w=425]


So I was going through Seth Godins’ blog (author of business books and a popular speaker.) and I came across this post (what do you know) of his where he writes about a bunch of things every good marketer should know. Thought it would be a good idea to share it on here.

  1. Anticipated, personal and relevant advertising always does better than unsolicited junk.
  2. Making promises and keeping them is a great way to build a brand.
  3. Your best customers are worth far more than your average customers.
  4. Share of wallet is easier, more profitable and ultimately more effective a measure than share of market.
  5. Marketing begins before the product is created.
  6. Advertising is just a symptom, a tactic. Marketing is about far more than that.
  7. Low price is a great way to sell a commodity. That’s not marketing, though, that’s efficiency.
  8. Conversations among the members of your marketplace happen whether you like it or not. Good marketing encourages the right sort of conversations.
  9. Products that are remarkable get talked about.
  10. Marketing is the way your people answer the phone, the typesetting on your bills and your returns policy.
  11. You can’t fool all the people, not even most of the time. And people, once unfooled, talk about the experience.
  12. If you are marketing from a fairly static annual budget, you’re viewing marketing as an expense. Good marketers realize that it is an investment.
  13. People don’t buy what they need. They buy what they want.
  14. You’re not in charge. And your prospects don’t care about you.
  15. What people want is the extra, the emotional bonus they get when they buy something they love.
  16. Business to business marketing is just marketing to consumers who happen to have a corporation to pay for what they buy.
  17. Traditional ways of interrupting consumers (TV ads, trade show booths, junk mail) are losing their cost-effectiveness. At the same time, new ways of spreading ideas (blogs, permission-based RSS information, consumer fan clubs) are quickly proving how well they work.
  18. People all over the world and of every income level, respond to marketing that promises and delivers basic human wants.
  19. Good marketers tell a story.
  20. People are selfish, lazy, uninformed and impatient. Start with that and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what you find.
  21. Marketing that works is marketing that people choose to notice.
  22. Effective stories match the worldview of the people you are telling the story to.
  23. Choose your customers. Fire the ones that hurt your ability to deliver the right story to the others.
  24. A product for everyone rarely reaches much of anyone.
  25. Living and breathing an authentic story is the best way to survive in an conversation-rich world.
  26. Marketers are responsible for the side effects their products cause.
  27. Reminding the consumer of a story they know and trust is a powerful shortcut.
  28. Good marketer’s measure.
  29. Marketing is not an emergency. It’s a planned, thoughtful exercise that started a long time ago and doesn’t end until you’re done.
  30. One disappointed customer is worth ten delighted ones.
  31. In the Google world, the best in the world wins more often, and wins more.
  32. Most marketers create good enough and then quit. Greatest beats good enough every time.
  33. There are more rich people than ever before, and they demand to be treated differently.
  34. Organizations that manage to deal directly with their end users have an asset for the future.
  35. You can game the social media in the short run, but not for long.
  36. You market when you hire and when you fire. You market when you call tech support and you market every time you send a memo.
  37. Blogging makes you a better marketer because it teaches you humility in your writing.

Having read all of this what struck me is that it’s all so simple! and yet alot of these facts get overlooked only too easily. There is always room to learn more and more each day, but learning matters only when you put what you have learned to use.This is but a chip of the iceberg, feel free to add on.

I have an IDEA!!

Firstly, bravo to the team at MD for their effort in bringing out this collaborative space. Surely hope to see more chair-falling presentations (@Kika – it shows that you loved SlideShare) and thoughts exchanged between all of us.

When I started blogging, it was a similar need to create a space where I could pin my thoughts down and refer to it often. Taking cue from this need of collaborative realtime idea sharing, I have always thought of brainstorming and how we can do it better. I personally like to ideate within a group and write down all possible ideas that come to the table and then thrash out the do-able ones.

A great place to do this online and realtime is

The name came possibly from the idea bubbles that come out of our minds, and its a neat place to start a conversation and then draw out ideas or maps or flow patterns around it and cross link them and phew!! It really lets you brainstorm online. You can share the mind maps you draw. Even embed them in your site. A big round of applause to its creators – Kirril and Levon.

You should take a look. Not only is it cool, its really easy. Did I mention that it’s “FREE”.

I even drew out a mind map for Masala Digital!! When this opens, just remember to click on the image and move it around to view it completely….

What do you think? Where’s my idea-fee?

Social Media & B2B?

So we all thought that social media was strictly a B2C medium…at least from a marketer’s perspective. While the same is more or less accurate if you look at the numbers and the "consumer" propensity towards youtube, myspace, facebook et al, it may be worthwhile to note certain social inroads into the B2B space, that are getting bigger by the day…

Good reasons for us to keep an eye out on these considering our huge IT client line-up!

LinkedIn offers a pretty basic but comprehensive opportunity: a company puts up a profile and connects with LinkedIn members, then it can promote and supplement profiles with targeted display ads, dedicated e-mails, and sponsorships of the "Answers" category. For instance, if you are a B2B technology company, you might want to sponsor the IT category. This way you reach people who are actively seeking information about your product/industry, and you get to engage with them in a community setting.

ITtoolbox also offers great ad opportunities for enterprise IT companies. You can set up a vendor profile; have a variety of ad units, text links, dedicated e-mails, and newsletter sponsorships; and even help with lead generation through Webcast promotions and white paper programs.

TechRepublic where you can tap into a huge professional IT community is my personal favourite!

Minyanville Exchange (a financial social networking site)

Designer Pages (for architecture and design)

And let’s not forget YouTube. Some B2B companies might dismiss YouTube as simply a youth-oriented, amateur-video site, but it is far from that. YouTube has turned into such a powerful and relevant social media tool that anyone can leverage its reach and viral effectiveness. There are thousands of education, science and technology, news, and how-to videos about and produced by various B2B brands and companies. For example, a quick search for "software as a service" on YouTube generated 1,220 videos. One video has been viewed more than 38,000 times!

About MD

Masala Digital is not just about Digital Marketing - it's about marketing in the digital age. The defining lines of marketing that segregated ATL, BTL & Digital hardly hold any water in the age of integrated marketing that assimilates effective practices across all available mediums to create truly integrated ideas. Masala Digital is the platform for sharing, collaborating and participating to add wings to these thoughts. You too can contribute..check out the "Contact Us" page for more information.